AlphaBoomers Addendum: CBS Owns Older Demo

Today’s column focused on AlphaBoomers and NBC’s efforts to get advertisers to pay attention to that demographic, which encompasses viewers age 55-64, a choice leading-edge of the baby boomer contingent that means nothing to advertisers obsessed with adults 18-49.

What I ended up leaving on the cutting-room floor of the column was an interesting postscript — namely, that if the networks do get advertisers to give that group a look, the immediate and biggest beneficiary will be CBS.

Here are the average ratings among AlphaBoomers for the four major networks thus far this season (per CBS, by way of Nielsen):

CBS — 8.7

ABC — 5.9

NBC — 4.2

Fox — 3.2

This makes a lot of sense. ABC’s top-rated show, after all, is “Dancing With the Stars,” which skews heavily toward an older female audience. And CBS has long done disproportionately well with an older crowd, including the three top-rated programs in that demo — the two “NCIS” shows and “The Mentalist” — and eight of the top 10 by that measure.

If the networks do get media buyers to recognize this demographic, in other words, CBS CEO Leslie Moonves — who happens to fall into that age bracket, along with the likes of Time Warner’s Jeff Bewkes, Disney’s Robert Iger, Peter Chernin, and some talk host named Oprah Winfrey — Moonves will have even more to smile about than the company’s recent earnings.


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